November 27, 2014

Elyria
Flurries
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Avon Lake fire chief asks to be demoted

AVON LAKE — Saying he didn’t want to regret time away from his family put on him by demands the job, Avon Lake Fire Chief Glen Eisenhardt announced this morning he will ask for a voluntary demotion to the his former rank of lieutenant.

Eisenhardt, 36, has served as chief for just under a year, having been named to the post in December 2011 to succeed the retiring William Morris.

“I didn’t’ want to miss time connecting with my son and daughter,” Eisenhardt said during a brief press conference at city hall.

A 12-year veteran of the department, Eisenhardt has an 8-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter.

“I have two passions … this job … and my family,” Eisenhardt said.

“I could go further (as chief) but I’d rather request a step-down than miss my family.

“My goals are to maintain an exceptional department and career and to have a strong family,” he said.

Eisenhardt will essentially switch jobs with Lt. Chris Huerner after Eisenhardt’s demotion becomes effective Dec. 18.

Mayor Greg Zilka said he fully understood and supported Eisenhardt’s request, which must be approved by the city Civil Service Commission.

That action is expected when the commission meets later this month.

Under Civil Service rules, Huerner will be promoted to chief, as he placed second on a 2011 Civil Service exam for the chief’s job.

Zilka and a number of City Council members who attended the session praised Eisenhardt for his professionalism and leadership during a challenging year that saw voters pass a paramedic levy, and the city decide to shift its emergency dispatching duties to a regional system.